Seven plead not guilty to charges stemming from ICE protests

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Seven people have pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor charges stemming from the weekslong demonstrations outside the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement building in Portland.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the seven appeared separately Monday to enter pleas in federal court to charges alleging they created disturbances and failed to comply with federal officers’ orders to leave the agency’s building.

Protesters had camped outside the office beginning June 17, leading to the building’s temporary closure. Authorities detained a number of people later that month while trying to reopen.

The activists sought the abolishment of ICE and the end of the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance immigration policy.

Prosecutors claim the seven protesters “unreasonably obstructed” the building, “impeded and disrupted” government employees’ official duties and refused orders to leave.

A trial has been scheduled for March.